Grateful Dead Live at Saratoga Performing Arts Center on 1988-06-28
- Live concert
- Grateful Dead
- DeadLists Project
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- Saratoga Springs, NY
- FM (matrix): DAT> CD> TrackThief> AIFF> Peak> WAV> SHN via Braverman (upgrade of prior seeds from this source)
Subject: Stella Blew my mind!!!
Subject: Great Show
Subject: ups and downs
Subject: 25 yrs. to the day!
Subject: Good show....good shit....bad heads.
Not running up to and climbing over a 15 foot fence dropping down and hoping you'll be 1 of the 6 in 10 not to get bagged. Matter of style I suppose.
Subject: Summer 88
In a year that would see "overkill" of the band at MSG in the fall - SPAC and Roch were examples of well played and interesting set lists.
Enjoy and God bless!!
Subject: there's one for everyone, right?
:) This one worked for me ...
Subject: Final SPAC show
Subject: lightning during candyman
Subject: Those were the days...
The scene: the middle of the end. We (Peter, Larry, and I) got to the venue and it was beautiful. After parking we walked down this tree lined trail that had a bunch of plaques/signs with history of the horseracing track. It was a really beautiful day. Later in the day, after we got into the venue, things turned somewhat ugly. Rain. Gatecrashers. Sound quality problems on the lawn due to bad setup for the rear speakers. This could have been an incredible day, but it sticks in my head as being a bit of heaven and a bit of hell all in one. I had been really looking forward to this one, as '84 SPAC was one of my all-time favorite tapes. The pre-drums second set is really fantastic, but all the off-stage BS made this an up-and-down day. This was the final summer without huge stadium shows. Too many idiots without tickets who were willing to do anything to get inside ruined it for all of us - and from here on out we'd have to settle for summer shows only in football stadiums.
The music: Set I: Decent song selection and all well played, but nothing stands as particularly noteworthy. Can't hear Phil at all. Row Jimmy has some nice bounce to it. This song went from pretty straight-forward in 87 to much more interesting in 89-90, and this has some of the bounce that really made it a fun tune later on (again highlighting 88 as a transition year on the upswing).
Set II: If my memory is correct, the rain had stopped by this point, but it was still cloudy and pretty chilly. Scarlet was a very welcome second set opener. It's hard to frown about gatecrashers and rain when the boys are pulling a sweet 21-minute Scarlet>Fire. At around the 7 minute mark, you can hear them just start to head into Fire, and then Jerry backs them away and keeps the jam going. It's no '77 or 3/22/90 (my vote for best Scarlet>Fire of this era), but this is a noteworthy Scarlet>Fire that holds its weight against any in the late 80s. Bobby's vocal improv segment of Estimated is decent, but not special. Like many in this era, he relies a little too much on the high pitch scream, rather than on mixing it with creative improv (for my favorite see 6/30/87 in Kingswood). The jam into Crazy Fingers is pleasantly different than most standard Estimated jams, with Jerry going outside the standard scale to bring things in line with the correct key for Crazy Fingers. It makes for a really interesting (albeit still a bit short) jam, and begs the question as to why they didn't combine these two more often. The post-Fingers jam also goes "out there" really nicely before succumbing to the two crazy guys in back. Take You Home makes it's second ever appearance and this time its in the slot that it would become it's typical placement. I always thought the space leading up to Take You Home should have reflected the mellow vibe, but that rarely happened. It'd be like Jerry burning up and down the fretboard and Bobby making his crazy whooping sounds, and then instead of Other One, all of a sudden they'd go into lulliby mode. I don't fault the song, it's freakin gorgeous, but the band should have done a better job of leading into it, IMO. GDTRFB picks things back up nicely, and includes some nice drawn out jamming between Jerry and Brent. Stella builds to a really nice peak and Jerry's voice is sounding really strong as well. NFA is a good ole crowd pleaser. Even Knockin has some extra kick to it near the end.
Subject: The news is out
Check out the Victim , Foolish to close set one.
Subject: Ahh...summer '88
Subject: total blast
Subject: Wow, Not one Audience Recording Listed Yet for 6/28/88
Kudos' to Saratoga for allowing the boys one last go around at the Performing Arts Center. Love that place esp. for GD shows. Had a fantastic time at every SPAC GD show I saw - caught 3/4. Unfortunately I missed 6/18/83.
Estimated>Crazy Fingers. Nice. Not many of those.
SPAC and GD is special, period. Collect em all.
4 for fun factor
Subject: The beginning of the end...
I was at this one with high hopes - I was taking my sister to her first show in 10 years! Well, as someone mentioned, the parking lot scene was good fun. In fact, it was the highlight of this show for me.
The sound was all confused with that screwy speaker thingy in the back, the gate-crashers were obnoxious, and the whole thing generally sucked. I'd seen the band a lot in the past couple of years, and was disappointed with the sloppy performance, esp. since my sis was there.
I suddenly could see that the writing was on the wall, re: crowd issues - I'm very surprised that the band was able to tour as long as they did, just due to the shitheads that seemed to materialize at every show. I can't say I really had fun at a show after 87 :-(
So, the one star is really about my personal experience of the event. I'm sure the 5-star folks had a great time, and I'm really glad for that.
Subject: sentimental value
I still listen to that tape after all these years and still believe this show proves why GD and summertime were a killer combination!
Unfortunately, time has not helped this recording.
For some reason there is NO bass in the first set and precious little after. The recording I made off the radio makes this SBD sound like they are playing in a tin can.
Also, the playing is by-numbers or worse. Better bet is 6/23/88...
We miss you Grateful Dead!!!!!!
Subject: Have to agree about the Stella Blue
Subject: Heaven and Hell
Hell. During the show, the gatecrashing started, overcrowing the lawn while fellow heads cheered them on (similar to the problems the band has had at this venue and at others). I was mortified by the crowds abhorrent behavoir. Then the thunderstorm started. Soaking wet and pissed off, I headed back to the bus stop halfway through the second set.
One of the problems I always had being a deadhead was that I loved the band, but frequently hated their fans. Self centered, self indulgent deadheads ruined the scene completely. No wonder this was the Dead's last visit to SPAC.
Subject: The "FOOLISH HEART" project
Subject: For Better or worse, this is a Jerry show.
2nd Set: Well, everyone's mood is sure to perk up hearing the familiar tones of "Scarlet" The drumming picked up perfectly when Jerry began singing. Loads of expeditions taken by Jerry, none of them particularly compelling but never snore-y. Jerry raises the show to new heights during the 3's of "Fire." YEA! the twilling is exemplary. Despite some moments of flamboyant overselling (in 5's) this is a wonderful 10 minutes of music. Right into "Estimated" we head... all three tunes of the second set have clocked in between 10:00-10:20... useless fact. The beat is kept simmering after Bobby's cries, so Jerry could lead as he may. Surprisingly, the band elects to inter "Crazy" territory. Oddly, Jerry's voice has reached a point of depletion...he's croaking the words and doesn't even bother to sing the final bridge (5:10) Still, the impossible longing mood has been sustained. About 7 1/2 minutes in, the song is abandoned as they concentrate on mustering a chaotic breakdown - not furious, but an obligatory action like the dissolution of fission. They come apart signified by some lovely xylophone work as we're "Drum"'ing" it. Some caw's add a haunting menacing tone but Mickey's pounding the ??? (devil percussions) so hard that it's more of a surgence of motivation than a message of leeriness. "Space" is a keen indicator that these sorts of excursions are best heard and played in the evening - where we have less control of our surroundings and are less influenced by the day's symbolism - be productive/business. After 8 1/2 minutes of what appears like Jerry could entertain himself all night just riffing, Brent sings us a "I Will" lullabye. Jerry's accompaniment during the last thirty seconds is well-placed. Yea, "GDTRFB" is always a pick me up. Jerry's enjoyin himself as we head into the final stretch. I wish they'd really pick it up and let it hang out. By the last 4's the sound becomes full and raucous...they're here to play. Time for Bobby to display his virility...my lord Jerry sounds so too. Approproately over-the-top. After this avalanche of libido, can "Stella"'s weariness be believed? Regardless, this "Stella" is anthemic and admirable considering Jer's so obviously smiling through such a devestating tune. Wow during 7:48-8:00...amazing Jerry. The band has obviously taken flight by now, so slight timing issues during "NFA" do not mar an otherwise very strong, sturdy performance.
Another "Knockin" serves to say goodnight to the mid-NY state faithful. Geez, 7:40 could knock over a redwood. (BTW, where is this amphitheatre in contrast to the racetrack?)
3 3/5 th stars. If brilliance cannot be reached through thoughtful introspection, knock em dead with your power.
Subject: I hear ya...
Subject: turning on!
Subject: bad trip
Subject: My first show....
Not a great show, but everyone knew it was going to be the last SPAC show ever so it was magical. Someone else bitched about the rain, but the magical thing there was that the previous time they played SPAC it rained when they started playin Fire, so it blew everyone's mind that the rain started as the band kicked into Fire this night as well. The rain was not hard. My great joy was a little kid straining to see from the lawn saying "Which one's Jerry mom?"
Phil played Earthquake Bass during Space and rattled our bones. I've always enjoyed breaking out this tape.
Subject: The rain came with the candyman
Subject: One of my Favs
Subject: STELLA BLUE!!!
Subject: thanks gr8fullfred
Subject: Not like the prior years
Doesn't live up to it's SPAC heritage though.
Subject: Dead were good, crowd was bad
At one point the crowd overpowered the security guards at one of the ramps to the balcony, and what appeared to be hundreds of fans bolted up the ramp into the upper section of the venue, while the crowd on the lawn cheered them on. There was alot more, but I'll spare you the details. It was a bad scene, we left after the first set.
All that being said, the dead were good in 88, with Jerry pretty well recovered from his near death coma in 86. I love Jerry's solo in Bertha from this show as well as the New Years 88 show.
I made a tape from the audience, and It came out pretty cool, cause the croud was singing the chorus along with Jerry. Since this was a radio broadcast, tapes have been floating around all along. I am looking forward to listening to this show again. I am crusing the net looking for Berthas from 1988.
Subject: SPAC '88
Subject: got me hooked
Subject: wuunderful !
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